11 Songs, 39 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Royal Tailor isn’t the first Christian band to mix R&B, pop and hip-hop (remember dcTalk?), but it achieves this fusion exceptionally well on Black & White. The quartet conveys its messages of hope, self-respect and salvation with a light yet passionate touch, laying down persuasive grooves along with its God-centered testimony. Lead singer Tauren Wells is capable of sleek vocal moves à la Bruno Mars or Maroon 5’s Adam Levine, with a hint of ‘80s-era Michael Jackson present as well. The band’s ensemble playing is tight and supple, veering from the percolating beats of “Wannabe” to the elegant balladry of “Gravity (Pulling Heaven Down).” Songs like “Hold Me Together” and “Love Is Here” are heartfelt expressions of faith with appeal for secular listeners. “Control” takes some pointed digs at contemporary pop culture, checking off references to Ke$ha, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry to a body-grabbing dance track. When they want to — as in “Freefall” — Royal Tailor delivers the sort of big celebratory choruses that Christian radio craves. A very encouraging debut by a band that blends genres with a confident sense of spiritual mission.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Royal Tailor isn’t the first Christian band to mix R&B, pop and hip-hop (remember dcTalk?), but it achieves this fusion exceptionally well on Black & White. The quartet conveys its messages of hope, self-respect and salvation with a light yet passionate touch, laying down persuasive grooves along with its God-centered testimony. Lead singer Tauren Wells is capable of sleek vocal moves à la Bruno Mars or Maroon 5’s Adam Levine, with a hint of ‘80s-era Michael Jackson present as well. The band’s ensemble playing is tight and supple, veering from the percolating beats of “Wannabe” to the elegant balladry of “Gravity (Pulling Heaven Down).” Songs like “Hold Me Together” and “Love Is Here” are heartfelt expressions of faith with appeal for secular listeners. “Control” takes some pointed digs at contemporary pop culture, checking off references to Ke$ha, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry to a body-grabbing dance track. When they want to — as in “Freefall” — Royal Tailor delivers the sort of big celebratory choruses that Christian radio craves. A very encouraging debut by a band that blends genres with a confident sense of spiritual mission.

TITLE TIME
3:42
3:22
3:41
3:39
5:17
3:22
2:57
3:43
3:31
3:37
3:01

About Royal Tailor

Blending pop, rock, and R&B with worship, Royal Tailor offer energetic melodies that inspire audiences to dance as well as pray. The members -- vocalist Tauren Wells, guitarist DJ Cox, bassist Blake Hubbard, and drummer Jarrod Ingram -- met in Indianapolis, Indiana at Indiana Bible College in the mid-2000s, forming the band to celebrate their Christian identity and call their peers to action. Wanting to give back to the community, the band spent a year mentoring youth in music and worship at the university’s Granite City, Illinois church. Soon after, the foursome began touring, performing over 300 shows in under two years and self-releasing the Royal Tailor EP in 2009. With the help of progressive worship band Leeland, Royal Tailor parlayed the EP into a record deal with Provident Music, relocated to Nashville, and began working on their full-length debut. The result was 2011’s hopeful, bright Black & White. Leadoff single “Hold Me Together” further boosted the band’s profile, landing on Billboard’s Top Christian Albums and Top Independent Albums charts. ~ Chrysta Cherrie

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